Managing Alibaba Cloud Instance and Disk

Once the Alibaba Cloud ECS instance is created, you can view cloud resources in the Overview tab.
Alibaba Cloud Resources Overview

Under the Instances tab, you can manage all the ECS instance for different region and zone.
I noticed that some of the regions have their own Management Console. Say, you have ECS instances in different regions, you need to click on the region name to view them individually.

Alibaba Cloud Instance List

To manage the ECS instance, click on the Manage on the right.
Manage Alicloud ECS Instance

I suggest making use a meaningful name to name the Instance Name, Hostname and Instance Description fields for better manageability. A typical naming convention might use the following pattern:

[company/project name]-[environment (dev, test, prod)]-[purpose]-[sequence number]
Manage Alicloud ECS Instance Modify Information

Cloud Disk
Click on the Instance Disk tab to view and manage disk details. It is recommended that apply the same naming convention to label the disk.
Manage Alicloud ECS Instance Disk Details

It is always recommended using instance snapshots feature to save the system state from a certain point in time for data backup or to create images. Creation the first snapshot will take longer time because the first snapshot is a full snapshot.
Manage Alicloud ECS Instance Disk Details Create Snapshot

Creating disk snapshot in progress.
Manage Alicloud ECS Instance Create Snapshot In Progress

Disk snapshot is a simple and efficient data protection method and can be used for these scenarios:-

      Routine system and data disks backup
      Before OS or software upgrade
      Use of production data for data mining, report queries, and developing and testing applications

You can apply an auto snapshot policy to disks to back up business-critical data at regular intervals. You need to create the first snapshot before creating an automatic snapshot policy.
Manage Alicloud ECS Instance Create Automatic Snapshot Policy

Assign and enable the Automatic Snapshot Policy.
Manage Alicloud ECS Instance Enable Automatic Snapshot Policy

Security Group
A security group functions similarly to network firewalls and is used to set network access controls for one or more ECS instances.

By default, the security group automatically created inbound rules for access over all ICMP ports, TCP Port 22, and TCP Port 3389
Alibaba cloud ECS Instance security group rules

I find that Alibaba Cloud should fine tune the default security group rules for port 22 for Linux instance using SSH or TCP Port 3389 for Windows instance using Windows Remote Desktop, and not both.

Other services offered by Alibaba Cloud are Virtual Private Cloud (private virtual network), Elastic IP, Server Load Balancer, Cloud DNS and Security related services which I yet to explore.

Actually, click on these link would open a new dedicated console for these service.
Alibala Cloud VPC EIP SLB

In summary of this experience, I find that Alibaba Cloud does offer decent products and services. They do have various products in elastic computing, networking & security, storage & CDN, database, big data & machine learning.
However, the Alibaba Cloud management console is far inferior to the other cloud providers, like Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform.

I encourage everyone to try out Alibaba Cloud with $300 free credit. Use my Alibaba Cloud referral link to get the free credit.

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